‘It’s your health and your finances that are on the line. So writing a check to Joe Biden is not a major priority…’
(Michael Barnes, Liberty Headlines) Former Vice President Joe Biden has all but clinched the Democratic Party nomination for president, but the Wuhan coronavirus shutdown has crushed his fundraising at a time when he needs it most.
Biden’s presidential campaign was essentially broke after finishing fourth in the Iowa primary caucus and a fifth-place finish in New Hampshire.
But fundraising ballooned after Super Tuesday election results catapulted Biden into front-runner status over Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders.
The campaign says it received more than $35 million in donations since March 1, with most of it coming online. But that momentum has come to a screeching halt.
“It’s the pandemic, it’s the Wall Street performance, it’s the economic slowdown,” a Democratic New York City financier told Vanity Fair this week. “It’s your health and your finances that are on the line. So writing a check to Joe Biden is not a major priority.”
Rufus Gifford, an Obama campaign bundler, organized an LGBT fundraising party for Biden in Midtown Manhattan for Thursday night. Seventy-five tickets were sold at $2,800 each, but the event is no longer happening.
“The priority has to be public health,” Gifford said.
As both mass gatherings and smaller in-person events are now off-limits, the Biden campaign has shifted to online fundraising amid its recent internet donation bonanza, which one Democratic digital operative said was disastrously behind until a few weeks ago.
“It was a very old-school operation over there,” she told Vanity Fair.
But Biden’s digital fundraisers aren’t working. A virtual fundraising event was scheduled for Thursday, March 19, but was cancelled without explanation. The move comes after a recent online town-hall gathering was plagued with technical difficulties.
In contrast, President Donald Trump’s reelection campaign and the Republican National Committee have far out-raised Biden and the DNC, often breaking records in the process. Last year, the Trump campaign and RNC raised nearly half a billion dollars. They raked in $60 million in January, and a whopping $86 million last month.
“Our record-breaking fundraising success month after month speaks to the incredible enthusiasm we are seeing for President Trump, and is fueling the greatest ground operation and grassroots army in history,” said RNC chairwoman Ronna McDaniel.
Without help from Democratic mega-donors like Michael Bloomberg, whose tens of billions of dollars in personal wealth apparently have not been aimed at combating the coronavirus, Biden stands to be at a substantial cash disadvantage heading into November.